why i am hindu by franccois gautiar

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Posted on August 12, 2015 b y François Gautier | 8 Comments
Girls & boys, I always believed that one has to practice spirituality. Am going for a 5 days meditation course
where I will be in silence and will take a much needed break from my cell phone and laptop. I will not thus
post anything till next T uesday. Meanwhile, here is a poll: DO Y OU THINK THAT HINDUISM IS A
RELIGION ? And I am posting a few teasers below. See u soon. Francois Gautier
I was a born and brought-up as a catholic and knew absolutely nothing about India, # Hinduism and Hindus.
When I was a young Frenchman of 19, I had the privilege to hear about the Mother and Sri Aurobindo,
through a friend, whose father was the last Governor of Pondichery. My friend told me that a caravan of 5
cars was about to drive from Paris to Pondichery. On a hunch, I joined this caravan.
Upon arriving in Delhi after driving trough nine countries, I felt I had come home and that this country was a
very special place.
I lived in the Pondichery Sri Aurobindo ashram for seven years. T hese were wonderful times: the Mother
was still alive and everything looked new, everything seemed possible. One read Sri Aurobindo, of course, as
he was the Master and the inspiration of the place, but one either did not understand or felt disconnected to
his political writings.
T hen, having done some journalism and photography in France, I started freelancing in South India and I
discovered the Hindus. What I chanced upon was that their religion was not in their heads, as it is for us
Christians – “I must pray, I must be good, I must not sin” – but that it was rather something they lived: they
seemed, for instance, to accept me, a Westerner, a non Hindu, as they seemed to accept all other religions.
T his discovery would never leave me, even when I became a political journalist in Delhi for major French
T hus slowly, I became acquainted with the eternal principles of Hinduism:
• A Hindu is one who searches for the Ultimate T ruth.
• Unlike other religions, Hinduism refuses to sanction the monopoly of one God, or one Scripture as the only
way to salvation.
• Hinduism is the eternal faith, Sanataana Dharma, or the universal law by which all humans are governed.
• # Hindus believe that the soul takes birth in a physical body, dies, gets reborn, until it has attained Perfect
• Hindus believe that one can cleanse oneself from karmas through yoga practices, such as pranayama,
meditation or asanas.
• One can be a Christian, a Muslim, a Jew, or from any other religion and still practice Hinduism. His Holiness
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar @SriSri has shown the way: breath has no religion and pranayama can be practiced by
anybody, whatever their creed.
In that sense, I consider myself a Hindu
François Ga